Just a Typical Tuesday

Quarterly reports are due Thursday! Get your metrics to Chet! Doctor shadowing starts tomorrow! Wait, are we already talking about Spring Break groups? Shoot, I still have to write a blog post! And oh wait... and tomorrow's English/art lesson has to be planned... So much to do. So little time. Excuses, excuses - right? Things are kind of crazy around here this week... so here's a visual tour of our day. Just a typical Tuesday in the Manna world.

Rain three days in a row and a power outage at the house... looks like the rainy season has begun. The view from the balcony of the library. And yes, those are cows in the middle of the road.

La Wendi takes art class and her winter hat accessory very seriously

Selena gets creative during art class. Today was "Free Art Day" in class, which means the kids could make whatever they wanted.

Profes Chet and Dana get into the "Free Art Day" fun, too.

Profe Chet's final masterpiece...
I was expecting a unicorn, but was pleasantly surprised by the dragon motif.
Medium: old dried coffee beans. I think Picasso would be jealous.

The kids' final art projects... complete with colored cheesy poofs?

Haley (center) leads Women's Exercise class, with the help of Sarah and Jackie.
(Our job is to count to 8 in Spanish over and over... and over again.)

Twelve women (and one dog...) came to class tonight!

Haley, Jackie, Krysta and Sarah wrap up the day by being PHENOMENALLY (ha.) productive in the office... we love Quarterly Reports! :)

And that, my friends, is a small glimpse into a typical Tuesday in Manna Ecuador life. Thanks for checking in!

Hasta Jueves,

The Faces of Summer Camp

Here is a small glimpse into our mornings as summer camp counselors for little kids. They are a little crazy and they wear us out, but just look how cute they are!

Emilia and her brother, Ivan, discuss important matters over water.

Classic Iori

Ivan and Joel ponder Jackie's Rainforest lecture.

Gisela getting ready for face painting.
(I finally got a picture of her! She hates the camera... and was subsequently angry at me for taking this one. Oops?)

Mike and Paola take turns face painting.
(Paola calls him "Mickey Mouse" and thinks it's quite possibly the funniest thing ever.)

Emilia takes her turn painting the profes' faces.

Joel and Emilia discuss their next tactical artistic move...

Looks like it's my turn...

Krysta wins. No contest.

Jackie and Joel

Haley and Gisela

Iori and Chet

Emilia examines her origami perrito.

The boys discuss whose orgami penguin can kill the others' origami penguins... in typical boy fashion.

Origami lessons... a perfect way to end the day.

Hope you're having a wonderful week!

The Year in Photographs

Welcome to Ecuador.

July 2008

Dunc channels Guayasamin while waiting to see The Dark Night.

Jos and I feel not so good about the cow brains for sale at the market.

The group plays in a giant snail during our first weekend in Quito.

An incredible welcome to our new city, Quito as seen from the top of Pichincha.

View from the spires of the Basillica.

August 2008

Three little smiles at the amusement park.

Art students in the 2008 summer camp.

10 de Agusto celebrations in Old Town.

The sun sets on the dry season in spectacular ways.

Attempting to summit Pichincha in a flurry of fog and snow.

Serena treats Dunc to his favorite, Enya!

The rainy season begins...

September 2008
The infamous river clean up.

Central church in Cuenca.

Eliah looking good.

Jos, Serena and I pile on our new Panama hats.

October 2008
View from the bus in to Quito.

Carving "pumpkins" with my family during their Ecuador visit.

November 2008
Festivals of Quito and bullfights on Thanksgiving.

Dunc carves our Thanksgiving bird.

December 2008
Eliah, Serena, Dana and Jos laugh during our Secret Santa exchange.

Returning to the West.

January 2009
Our bus advertising blitz attracts it's first interested party.

View of the Mindo cloud forest from above.

One of the many hummingbirds in Mindo.

February 2009
And the rainy season continues...

Jos and Dana lead a game in Children's English.

Art students work on their Van Gogh Starry Night interpretations.

March 2009
Jos and the Duke spring breakers paint the teen center in preparation for it's grand opening.

The Library opening concert.

April 2009
Blue footed boobies on Isla de la Plata!

BBQ on the roof of the library with the teens from the teen center.

Wendy sets up Chinese Checkers and regards the camera skeptically.

May 2009
Setting up our booth at the health fair.

Selena and Jori goof around in the kid's corner.

Full moon during a family dinner on the roof.

Mark, Selena and Carlitos enjoy the bean bags.

Seth bonds with Joseph while hanging in the teen center.

June 2009
One of Michael's guitar students listens to the example chords.

July 2009
Celebrating with Dana after she reached the summit of Cotapaxi!

The wall of maps and Duncan's head.

Seth attempts to shoulder both Serena and Dana in Otavalo. Mark and Dunc help. Eliah doesn't.

August 2009
Dana bonds with the polo horses at the hacienda.

And now it's their turn...!

Love, Holly

Brass Kunckles and Birthday Cakes

Hey all.

It's been a week since there's been anything new on here, hasn't it? Seeing as how this is in fact called the "Daily Life Blog", that is a little more than shameful. Sincere apologies all around.

Right now it feels like my sinus cavity has been punched a few times by someone wearing brass knuckles while his friend poured molasses into my lungs and is now sitting on my chest. And I'm not the only one who is feeling like this, so things are pretty good down here, as you might have guessed.

Aside from that delightful update on the health status of the Manna house dwellers, I'm at a loss for where to start with recapping the past few weeks. And so I turn to the trusty Manna camera to do the job for me. Thanks Manna Cam!

(And ps. Happy Birthday today to Sarah Scott!)

Tuesday sports day at the library; nothing like an obstacle course competition to release pent-up library energy.

The picture doesn't actually do it justice, but when Dana and I saw the hills alight with glowing red sunset shadows on Tuesday evening, we very nearly wept from the grandeur of it all. Very nearly.

Wednesday at the library is Theater Day, taught by two friends from a local Theater company. The kids are in absolute LOVE with Wednesdays.

Just look at those engaged faces! Like I said, LOVE.

Chet Polson celebrates his 22nd birthday with a cake that braved 2 forms of Ecuador's public transportation with me.

View from Pichincha.

Mike Gabrys, Dana, Sarah Scott, Serena and Chet Polson strike a one-legged (?) pose up on Pichincha.

Sarah and Chet bond on Pichincha.

Serena and Dana love each other and Pichincha.


The Girls and The Quito

This past weekend, Jos and I planned a girl's weekend in Quito for the four of us. We rented 2 rooms in a hostel and spent the weekend wandering through our beloved city as (slightly more informed and jaded) tourists. Serena and Dana joined us Saturday night for a nap, some dinner, and a lot of dancing, per usual. When there's a live cover band singing a medley of Beatles, Led Zepplin, and Doors songs, one has no other option. One must dance. Please enjoy the pictoral account of our weekend.

On Saturday morning, Jos and I had bagels and fresh fruit juice for breakfast and wished our house had potted plants in our window sills.

We spent a late morning in silent awe inside a church painted in such decadent colors it felt as though we had walked into a sorbet coated, South American Versailles.

We walked through a tent city protesting PetroEcuador's presence in the rain forest.

We climbed two huge metal balls in a park. And then some spray painted helium canisters because they looked lonely.

We ate a lunch of red bananas, pineapple, freshly baked wheat bread, and avocado-black bean-onion-tomato-lime salad on our little hostel balcony.

Then we took a nap and readied ourselves for a classic-rock jam session with 100 of our closest Ecuadorian friends...

On Sunday, Dana reorganized some of the cement parking aids...

while Jos found herself a handsome boyfriend at the mall.

Then we all watched Transformers 2: Rise of the Fallen. And we LOVED IT. Seriously. It was hysterical.

At 9pm, we hailed a cab, piled all our bags into it's trunk, and let out collective sighs every few minutes as we drove our tired, city-dazed little souls back to the boys, the summer vols, and the fresh-aired valley.

Sigh. We will certainly miss this place.